Despite appeals by professional bodies, HMRC will not waive late-filing penalties for self-assessment tax returns due on 31 January 2021.
HMRC has, however, confirmed that if a deadline is missed because of the pandemic, this should not result in a penalty as long as an appeal is made.
In a recent letter, Jim Harra, CEO of HMRC, advised; ‘We will continue to encourage timely filing… Any departure from this simple message increases the risk that taxpayers will miss both filing and payment deadlines unnecessarily or miss out on the simple arrangements we have put in place for securing time to pay.’
Harra also offered reassurance that those unable to file on time due to pandemic will not have to pay a penalty; ‘We will not start to issue penalties until we have completed our review of the options and monitoring of filing rates and confirmed which approach we will take.’
Confirmation has also been given that HMRC’s telephone helplines and webchat services will be open for the weekend of the self-assessment deadline:
30 January - 8:00 to 18:00
31 January - 9:00 to 18:00 on 31 January
8:00 to 20:00
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If you have any queries about self-assessment filing please give me a call on 0191 567 8611 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.